Thursday, January 10, 2008

Can I Please Install My Programs In English?

I usually don't do automated stuff. Automated updates, express installs, etc.

Today I got home, opened my computer and opened something from Stage6. My Divx player wanted to update itself. I don't do automated updates, but this time I though, why not? Every end-user is using automated updates anyways and they have no clue what they are doing. And the amount of automation means that it probably works nowadays. I do the old way and actually read every Windows update technote and decide what I want to update, but what the heck. I guess it won't hurt to try the normal ID: 10T way. Wrong! Mistake! Error! You fail!

New Divx player went to 97% in downloading. Didn't even start to install yet. ...stayed there. Stayed some more. The clip was playing on the background with no possibility to adjust anything. No pause, no stop, no nothing. Very good updater that doesn't allow me even to pause what I'm doing while it's working on top of the friggin' clip. After about 15 minutes I pressed cancel and thought I do it the sensible way. Download the installation file, stop every other process and install the update manually. Wrong!

Took half an hour to cancel the download. How is that possible if it's not installing yet?

Then it made my whole system to not respond Mouse was moving, but right-click opened some weird menus from programs in my system tray. Regardless where I pressed. Couldn't even get to Task Manager with CTRL+SHIFT+ESC. Couldn't quit programs with ALT+F4. Couldn't open my Start menu. Pressed power button and waited for shutdown. It seamed like it's not gonna come. Then all of a sudden my screen went gray and it finally started to shut down programs.

Got my computer back on, but I have to remove and reinstall Divx Player. What do I learn from this? Never, ever ever trust automated updates. The first one I used and it messed up my player.

This brings me to a thing I have been meaning to rant about for a long time already.

If you code a program and you are so kind that you translate it in several languages, could I please choose the language I want to install it? When XP came, the automated language guesser and enforcer is so very annoying. I have been using computers when the operating system and all the programs were only in English. My operating system is still in English. I do not want to have some programs in Dutch, some in Finnish, some in Swedish, some in English, etc... I want that everything in my system is in the same language. Can I please, friggin' please do that?

If you are a programmer and come from English speaking country, fine. And your operating system is in English and your programs are in English, and your input locale is in English and your regional settings are in English you'll never have this problem. But I've noticed that if you have a Swedish keyboard (same as Finnish, but with a different name), Finnish regional settings and Dutch time-zone, it is a random thing when you install a program.

iTunes checks your regional settings. It would install it in Finnish in this case. Some other program checks your time-zone and picks the most common language in your zone. Another one, like Quark Express will check your default keyboard layout. Not the currently-in-use one, but the default one. This means if I don't have the option to change the installation language, that I would have four different languages in my computer.

If I have my operating system in English, please suggest that language first! Or at least let me choose. iTunes lets me choose after 5 clicks. If, because of my current location, my regional settings were Dutch, I would have to learn that language first, in order to know when to change the language. Ok, I know Dutch enough to know where to change it, but suppose I was in Guang Zhou, China.

Some programs let me choose and some programs just guess what I would like and rule out every other option.

Why do XP have the preferred installation language option anyways? What point it is to set it in English, if no software manufacturer know it exists?

If I am capable of operating English Windows, I think I am capable of changing the installation language to any other language I wish if English is not the language I want to install my program in.

And some of the braniacs (including, but they do have the "In English" link there) code the language options drop-down menu in a way that all the options are in the current language. If you would have to have regional settings as Finland, because you are on a business trip in Finland or send documents to Finland, but are, in fact a German. And if you would install a program and the braniac who coded it translated the names of the languages. And it would recommend the options in that language the installation is currently on. Would you know that you should choose "Saksa" from the menu? German and Saksa sound so alike.

Many webpages, by the way, guess your language preference according to your location. It's cool that you can nowadays make a script that checks your location and displays the page in that language. But give me a clear choice, not a hidden small link and if I choose to view the page in English, remember it. If I visit Milano, I don't understand enough Italian to download latest drivers from Italian site. I want the page to remain in English, if I have so chosen.

So please please pretty please with sugar on top, let me choose the language myself.

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaargh! I must stop now.

1 comment:

A.I.W. said...

a little long after you posted this but I just reached my last nerve with that same quirk. The thing is I'm in Japan but from the English speaking Caribbean. When iTunes comes up with all that Japanese characters at the start is it quite annoying when I know my system language is English. Argg